People, Places & Racing News

Movers & Shakers: Kia Unveils XLine Sorento Concepts; GM EV Plant to Employ 5G Technology

By SEMA Editors

YosemiteKia Sorento Yosemite Edition.

Kia Unveils Two Rugged XLine Sorento Concepts

As the next step in Kia’s capability-focused product strategy, the all-new 2021 Sorento is poised to bring customers a new level of trailready toughness not yet seen from the brand. To celebrate this rugged personality, Kia Motors America (KMA) unveiled a pair of custom-built Sorento SUVs – the Yosemite Edition and the Zion Edition – during the brand’s virtual national dealer meeting last week. The two wilderness-themed SUVs build upon the production Sorento XLine model, a variant that highlights offroad prowess with unique 20-inch wheels, increased ride height to 8.3in., improved approach/departure angles, more advanced AWD with snow-mode, and a more robust roof rack than the outgoing Sorento.

Kia Sorento Zion Edition
Kia Sorento Zion Edition.

Customized by LGECTE Motorsports of San Dimas, CA, each vehicle receives its namesake and inspiration from the outdoor environments found in America’s great national parks. The Sorento Yosemite Edition is a dream build for high elevation adventuring and mountain living, painted in “Pine Green” in a matte finish with gloss and matte black accents. The Sorento Zion Edition is a desert escape vehicle made for stomping dunes, painted in “Desert Sand” in a gloss finish with gloss black accents.

Both feature custom fender flares that sit atop 20-inch wheels and 32-inch all-terrain tires. Body armor includes custom skid plates and brush guards in a satin chrome finish. For packing gear, the Yosemite edition wears a brawny roof rack, while the Zion Edition comes equipped with a full-length cargo top.

The 2021 Kia Sorento will arrive in showrooms beginning in November. Customers can tailor their Sorento to their lifestyle and needs with attachments such as roof rack crossbars, tow hitches for trailers, and side steps for easier load-in of toys.

GM EV Plant to Employ 5G Technology

GM PlantGM's all-electric vehicle assembly plant is the first automotive plant in the U.S. to install dedicated 5G fixed mobile network technology.

General Motors announced that Factory ZERO, Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Center, the company’s all-electric vehicle assembly plant, is the first automotive plant in the U.S. to install dedicated 5G fixed mobile network technology. Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband service is operating now at Factory ZERO, with its exponential increases in both bandwidth and speed supporting the ongoing transformation of the plant as it prepares to begin producing EVs in 2021.

Factory ZERO is being completely retooled with a $2.2 billion investment, the largest ever for a GM manufacturing facility. Once fully operational, the plant will create more than 2,200 good-paying U.S. manufacturing jobs. Both the upcoming GMC HUMMER EV and the Cruise Origin will be built at Factory ZERO on GM’s Ultium battery platform. Ultium is flexible enough to build a wide range of EVs —cars, trucks and more — and is the heart of GM’s future EV lineup.

Key benefits of 5G in a manufacturing plant include reliability, speed and sheer scale. 5G’s massive bandwidth offers scalability to manage thousands of devices across Factory ZERO’s more than 4 million square feet of space, with ample capacity to support emerging technologies.

“Factory ZERO will be GM’s flagship assembly plant in our journey to an all-electric future,” said Phil Kienle, GM vice president of North America Manufacturing and Labor Relations. “Installing 5G at Factory ZERO is an essential step in the transformation of this plant, and signals how important advanced manufacturing is in the ongoing race to an EV future.”

Today, the Internet of Things is transforming manufacturing plants, enabling connected devices to deliver important benefits to quality and safety. Countless systems and equipment rely on connectivity, such as robotics, sensors and the Automated Guided Vehicles that deliver materials across the factory floor.

E.C.D. Shows Off One-of-a-Kind Defender D90 Resto-mod

Each vehicle produced by E.C.D. is fully bespoke, a one-off that is fully designed by the client and hand-built from the ground up in 2,200 hours by master-certified A.S.E. craftsmen.

E.C.D. Automotive Design, known for custom lifestyle vehicles, has delivered a one-of-a-kind convertible D90 with a baby-blue hue and a custom teak bed. Each vehicle produced by E.C.D. is fully bespoke, a one-off that is fully designed by the client and hand-built from the ground up in 2,200 hours by master-certified A.S.E. craftsmen.

Project Kutter may look baby blue in hue, but the soft-top D90 is actually painted in a Cool Grav Khaki gloss paint with all-silver accents. Powered by a 6.2L V8, Project Kutter has a 6-speed automatic transmission, upgraded Ashcroft axles, and an upgraded suspension setup with Performance Bilstein shock absorbers. This D90 rides on 18" Hawke Design in silver wheels with a handmade Badger Coachworks Light Oak canvas top and a convertible style wheel carrier also in silver.

One of Project Kutter’s most stunning features in the Brazilian Teak rear bed. Inside, Project Kutter’s stake bed is complemented with Relicate Mineral Blue leather with custom detailed diagonal weave "Tuxedo" inserts in each of its classic Puma seats and matching door cards. The build has a Nardi Classic steering wheel wrapped in Navy Leather, White Hot Gauges with navy numbers and pointers, navy seatbelts, and Wilton Wool Blue Carpet in its front area. This D90 has its share of modern touches with an Alpine radio, JL Audio speakers, rear ac, built-in wifi, a Ravelco Anti-Theft system, and a battery charger plug-in point at the rear of the vehicle.